STYLE

Fall 2017 Was Fashion's Most Racially Inclusive Season Ever, Says New Report

03/20/2017 11:07 EDT

It's 2017 and it looks like the fashion industry is finally getting the hang of this whole diversity and inclusion thing.

According to a new report by The Fashion Spot, the fall 2017 season was the industry's best yet when it came to casting non-white models for the runway.

Out of New York, London, Milan and Paris, New York Fashion Week took the lead with 31.5 per cent of their talent being people of colour, and for the first time ever, every show during NYFW had at least one model of colour.

London came in at second place, while Paris came third and Milan came last.

When it came to overall inclusivity, labels Chromat, Marc Jacobs, Tome, Christian Siriano and Dolce & Gabbana took the top spots, with runways that featured not only models of colour, but also trans, curvy and older talent.

halima aden

Halima Aden, a Muslim, refugee-born model also made her stunning debut at the Yeezy Season 5 runway show in New York, proudly rocking her hijab.

But although fashion has made some significant strides when it comes to representation, there's still a ways to go — and casting director James Scully made no qualms about calling out designers for their unethical practices.

Specifically calling out Lanvin, and a number of other luxury retailers, Scully wrote a long Instagram post detailing their shortcomings during Paris Fashion Week in late February.

So true to my promise at #bofvoices that I would be a voice for any models, agents or all who see things wrong with this business I'm disappointed to come to Paris and hear that the usual suspects are up to the same tricks. I was very disturbed to hear from a number of girls this morning that yesterday at the Balenciaga casting Madia & Rami (serial abusers) held a casting in which they made over 150 girls wait in a stairwell told them they would have to stay over 3 hours to be seen and not to leave. In their usual fashion they shut the door went to lunch and turned off the lights, to the stairs leaving every girl with only the lights of their phones to see. Not only was this sadistic and cruel it was dangerous and left more than a few of the girls I spoke with traumatized. Most of the girls have asked to have their options for Balenciaga cancelled as well as Hermes and Ellie Saab who they also cast for because they refuse to be treated like animals. Balenciaga part of Kering it is a public company and these houses need to know what the people they hire are doing on their behalf before a well deserved law suit comes their way. On top of that I have heard from several agents, some of whom are black that they have received mandate from Lanvin that they do not want to be presented with women of color. And another big house is trying to sneak 15 year olds into paris! It's inconceivable to me that people have no regard for human decency or the lives and feelings of these girls, especially when too too many of these models are under the age of 18 and clearly not equipped to be here but god forbid well sacrifice anything or anyone for an exclusive right? If this behavior continues it's gonna be a long cold week in paris. Please keep sharing your stories with me and I will continue to to share them for you. It seems to be the only way we can force change and give the power back to you models and agents where it rightfully belongs. And I encourage any and all to share this post #watchthisspace

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"I have heard from several agents, some of whom are black that they have received mandate from Lanvin that they do not want to be presented with women of colour," he wrote. "If this behaviour continues it's gonna be a long cold week in Paris. Please keep sharing your stories with me and I will continue to to share them for you. It seems to be the only way we can force change and give the power back to you models and agents where it rightfully belongs."

A number of black models were also vocal about the all-white catwalks during Paris Fashion Week, and many took to the streets to protest outside of Balenciaga's fall 2017 show, carrying signs that read "Black Models Matter" in French.

MODELS SPEAK UP

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